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we are back now with more of "today" on a friday morning. it's the 22nd day of january 2010. some nice people hanging around on the plaza. it's nice to see them. it's a little chilly out there, although i guess not so bad. >> not too bad. >> temperature in the mid-30s, which is good for this time of year. inside studio 1a, i'm matt lauer along with natalie morales. al had to leave just a little bit early this morning. meanwhile, the weather on the west coast, natalie -- >> we've been getting it. >> still a huge story. a couple big storms continue to pound southern california. already, those storms have dumped up to 15 inches of rain in some areas, 5 inches in l.a. fears of huge mud slides are forcing hundreds to evacuate their homes. that, of course, in the
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foothills. and more rain is expected today. we're going to have the latest on that wild weather coming up in a couple minutes. >> all in that burn area, too, which is certainly not helping the situation. >> more vulnerable. >> exactly. also ahead, some questions -- some diet questions answered. "today's" diet and nutrition editor, joy bauer, is back with us once again to field some of your concerns on weight loss and health. this morning, tackling that annoying point when you're chugging along on that diet, and then all of a sudden, the scale just stops moving? well, they call it a plateau, but it can feel like a brick wall for a lot of you going through it right now. we'll have more on getting through that and reaching your goals, coming up. also, advice everyone who does this job needs, five easy tips for getting the best possible sleep of your life. we'll share those with you and we'll all be listening intently. first, let's go over to the news desk. ann's standing by with all the headlines. >> thanks. >> good morning. >> good morning, you guys. and in the news this morning, everybody -- good morning, once again. it's the tenth day after that devastating earthquake in hawaii, and survivors are still struggling to get food, water and other critical supplies in
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haiti. a u.s. charity reports that on thursday, men armed with sticks stole about 50 tons of food in haiti, and the government temporarily moved more than 400,000 people out of port-au-prince to reduce the risk of disease in the capital city. tonight, nbc news will be among the networks carrying a fund-raising telethon to help in the relief effort. "hope for haiti now" airs at 8:00/7:00 central time. more rain today in parts of southern california, already saturated by a week of powerful pacific storms. we've got nbc's george lewis in los angeles with more on this story. hey, george, good morning. >> reporter: good morning to you, ann. this community, la canada flintridge, lies just below the area burned in last year's big l.a. county brush fires. the fear is that with enough water, these baron hillsides could come tumbling down in a torrent of mud and debris. with rain falling on these hills at the rate of more than an inch an hour, the ground is
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completely saturated, and the water has to find someplace to go. officials say that's why they've asked residents of almost 2,000 homes to leave. >> there's still the threat of mud and debris slides and debris flows. there's mud and water in the streets. >> reporter: debbie harris is among those who decided to ignore the warnings. >> it's not that far down the hill for us, so even if we have to walk out, it would be okay. >> reporter: flooding all over southern california has been a major headache this week, snarling traffic. >> this is one of those low-lying areas where water tends to pond. >> reporter: and creating a mini niagara just off the long beach freeway. the campus of cal state university long beach was closed because of flooding in several buildings. some 60 miles east of los angeles, san bernardino county sheriff's deputies used a helicopter to rescue a man and a woman trapped by floodwaters in the normally dry santa ana river wash. in the high sierra, a major
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crash involving several big rigs and other vehicles in a snowstorm caused the closure of westbound interstate 80. an suv with a mother and two babies plowed into one of the trucks, but the three of them survived. weather also fouled air transportation, forcing southwest airlines to cancel more than 400 flights in california and arizona. as the storms moved eastward, they've dumped more than a foot of snow on flagstaff, arizona, a place where these kinds of conditions are a novelty. now, back here in california, the rain and snow are expected to taper off tonight, but officials warn it will be up to 72 hours after the skies clear before the danger of mud slides subsides. ann? >> all right, george lewis this morning. george, thanks. airports in india are on high alert today. intelligence officials say that they've uncovered a plot by militants linked to al qaeda to hijack a plane. today, defense secretary
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robert gates told pakistan's military officers that fighting terrorists along afghanistan's border is in pakistan's interests as well as washington's. toyota is recalling more than 2 million vehicles to fix accelerator pedals with mechanical problems that can cause them to become stuck. the recall includes rav4s, corollas, avalons, camrys and tundras. for more information on this, you can go to our website at those are some of the top stories at five minutes past the hour. let's now go back to matt. >> all right, ann, thank you very much. we're going to swing out and get a forecast this morning from the weather channel's stephanie abrams, who, as we said, is here while al had to skip out a little early. >> yeah, that's right, and we're celebrating birthdays on the plaza. melissa, it's your mom's birthday. i'll cover it -- you put how old she was, but you say we have to cover it. >> happy birthday, mom! we love you. >> that's one. we also have a 10-year-old celebrating her birthday. what do you want for your birthday? >> this trip. >> good. i'm glad you got what you wanted for your birthday. let's look at what kind of weather you'll encounter through the day today.
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unfortunately, messy in the west again. more bad news. >> the roads should be a fine but we will still see a chance for often on rain showers. above freezing and i found yet another birthday, 24 years. what is this, california, texas, new york? how does that work? >> my husband's in the marine corps, in california, and we went to texas to pick up some family and we're here for my birthday. >> love it natalie, over to you. >> thank you so much, stephanie. this morning on "diet sos,"
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we're tackling your diet problems. from beating the weight plateau to cooking with ken was, diet and nutrition editor joy bauer. >> good morning, natalie. >> we have great questions, so let's get to them. tamara is with us on skype from kentucky. go ahead with your question. >> hi, tamara! >> hi, joy. my question is, why do i sabotage myself? just when i start to make progress, i'll set myself back with small, careless mistakes. so, how can i work to reward myself nutritiously when i've done well? >> one we all do. we're all guilty of that, right? >> that's right. >> yeah. >> and i think, tamra, your best strategy is to take one day at a time, and you have to be your personal diet coach. you want to be positive, you want to be motivating, encouraging, but most importantly, you want to be consistent. you want to start each day with powerful self talk. and here are a few strategies that could really help keep you on track so you do, this time,
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finally reach your goals. the first thing is to track your progress every single day. i want you to write down what your weight is on a daily basis. create a graph or some sort of, you know, list. and then also, pick up one of these little pads that you could stick in your purse. >> like a journal. >> yes. >> right. >> and in that morning time, when you're doing your self talk, i want you to think about the challenges and the obstacles that you're going to have during the day and jot them down. it may be i'm going to pass by that vending machine or i'm not going to be coerced into ordering the tuna melt or cheeseburger by my co-worker. and every single time you hit one of these goals, you're going to check it off, because it's such great incentive to stay on track when you see your accomplishments. >> nothing better than checking off that goal, right? >> i love checking off those lists. >> and you also say allow yourself some fun food. how important is that to give yourself that one thing? >> very, very important, because we all know that deprivation will backfire with a vengeance. so, i say you want to allow yourself one daily fun food each
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and every single day. and portion it out at about 150 calories. that may mean two to three small cookies or a scoop of some light ice cream. it could even mean some popcorn or a glass of wine. and i would save it for later in the day so you have it to look forward to. >> right. >> and it could sort of help you to pass on some of the temptations that you see on a regular basis. >> don't overdo it, but exactly. >> i think one more thing to point out is she needs to make a list of non food rewards -- a pedicure, a manicure, maybe renting a movie with a friend. and every time she loses five pounds, she treats herself to one of those prizes, because we love prizes. >> yeah. >> and a prize doesn't mean a piece of chocolate cake. there are so many other things that you can look forward to. >> we'll keep you on your goal. >> so, i hope that helps. >> next question i think is another one that so many dieters can relate to. we have charna on the phone with us from illinois. good morning, charna, what's your question for joy? >> hi, charna.
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>> caller: good morning, joy. i made a new years resolution to lose 17 pounds that i gained over the past year and a half. i do cardio every day. i've been following a 1,500-calorie meal plan and i started shedding weight pretty consistently over the past 2 1/2 weeks but then hit a plateau, and the scale seems stuck, and i don't know what to do. i'm starting to lose motivation. can you please help me? >> good for you, though. that's amazing what you've done so far, right? >> and the dreaded plateau, ugh. i'm glad you asked this question because there are a lot of people that need this answer. >> yeah. >> you know, unfortunately, it's often inevitable that you hit a plateau, and some of the reason may be this. when you started the diet, you were losing effortlessly at 1,500 calories, but as you lose weight and you get smaller, your body, unfortunately -- this is very unfair -- requires fewer calories. so, the first thing i tell you is you may need to just shave off 100 or 200 calories and aim for somewhere between 1,200 and 1,400 calories a day and see if that helps. something you can do to boost
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your metabolism -- kudos for that cardio exercise. that's great. but if you add two to three days a week of some light strength training, what you do is you increase your muscle tone, and when you increase that muscle mass, you boost your metabolism. so, you're going to burn more calories. another thing to think about is when the newness of a diet starts to wear off, we tend to get a little loosey-goosey with our portions and a little bit of the mindless eating kicks in. so, now is the time to whip out those measuring cups and the spoons. and the other thing i would say is -- >> be careful not to eat after dinner. >> close down that kitchen after dinner, because women in particular tend to like to nibble at night into the evening, and the calories add up. so, brush and floss your teeth, sip on a nice herbal tea, maybe even try the whitening teeth strips, anything that's going to keep you out of the kitchen. >> all right, well, we thank charna for that question. next, an e-mail from ashley in
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oswego, new york. ashley asks -- i've been hearing a lot about quinoa. what is it and how can i cook with it?" it's the hot grain right now, right? >> it's a superfood. it's typically in the category of whole grains because it has a similar nutritional profile, fwhut reality, it's a protein-rich seed. one cup is about eight grams of protein, and it's great for vegetarians because it has all of the essential imenino acids that your body needs to tlirhri and you can find it in the supermarkets with the rice or in the natural foods section. it's super easy to cook with. the only tricky part is take the uncooked seeds and rinse them under water, because there's a bitter compound called siponin on the outer covering, that once you get off, you boil it up just like rice, either with water or low-sodium chicken broth, and then you can enjoy it as a breakfa breakfast porridge, just like oatmeal, or make a pilaf and add
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in fruit, or a salad with vegetables, swiss charred and raisins -- >> you can cook for me any day, joy. >> delicious. >> you're making me hungry. >> people will love quinoa. >> it's great. next, outside on the plaza, laurie took a pink party bus out here from pennsylvania for her 40th birthday. congratulations, happy birthday! >> oh, happy birthday. >> thank you. my question is, as i'm turning 40, what should i eat, what sorts of fruits and vegetables to keep my skin looking healthy? >> ah, 40 the big four-oh. by the way, you're a baby. >> thank you. >> when it comes to foods that help your skin make it radiant and keep it glowing, you want to think about beta carotene, and when you think about beta carotene-rich foods, you think bright orange and dark greens. so, your best options are going to be sweet potatoes, carrots, spina
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spinach. what i do with spinach is make a nice marinara sauce and put in an entire bag of baby spinach leaves and i wilt it in and toss it with either whole wheat pene or put it over grilled chicken. also, take advantage of the winter squashes, again, that deep orange. >> right. >> pumpkin is great as well. >> omegas are also great for your skin, right? like anti-inflammatories. >> omegas are good for everything. >> everything. >> again, wild salmon and sardines and ground flax seeds. so, we want to go bright orange, deep green and the fatty fish. >> exactly. okay. great. thanks, laurie. congratulations and happy birthday, again. >> happy birthday. >> thank you! >> next question is from terry in glenwood, new jersey. go ahead, terry. she's joining us from skype. good morning. >> hi, terry. >> good morning. >> uh-oh. [ inaudible ] >> a non stressful way to lose belly fat. i had three back operations and i'm unable to work out and diet alone is not helping me.
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do you have any suggestions? >> definitely, and there's good news and bad news when it comes to belly fat. the bad news is, you can't spot reduce. there's no one trick i can tell you that will blast away any one spot on your body, including belly fat. but the good news is, if you eat less and you move a little bit more, you're going to lose weight all over your body, and it's going to hit the belly as well. so, you can get rid of the belly fat. now, because you can't really exercise, it's going to be super important that you really, really tighten up your food. i would say you want to aim for between 1,200 and 1,500 calories a day, and take advantage to help fill yourself up of the low-calorie but high-volume foods, like the nonstarchy vegetables. you could do broth-based vegetable soups. fruit, particularly, berries and oranges and grapefruits. air-popped popcorn is going to be one of the best snacks you could eat. and you also want to limit the
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foods that we hear about are so healthy but they're very calorie dense. >> right. >> for example, dried fruit, olive oils, avocados. again, they're very, very healthy for you, but the calories add up quick. >> right. >> so, just be very careful with them. >> good luck to you, terry. >> i hope this helps. >> good luck. >> good luck, terry! >> we wish you the best. >> thank you. >> joy, as always, you are a master. thank you for helping us all out. >> thank you, natalie. still to come, the positive power of plants, from your overall health to easing the sniffles. what you can grow to help you feel better. up next, a glimmer of hope for the people of haiti. dr. nancy's reporting there live. then... well... i have to keep winding myself up to deal with the sadness, the loss of interest, the trouble concentrating, the lack of energy. if depression is taking so much out of you, ask your doctor about pristiq. (announcer) pristiq is a prescription medicine proven to treat depression. pristiq is thought to work by affecting the levels of two
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saving lives in haiti with over 200,000 earthquake survivors in desperate need of medical care, but now a state-of-the-art hospital has arrived on the scene. we have nbc's chief medical editor dr. nancy snyderman here with more. nancy, this is like the cavalry arriving. >> reporter: it is the cavalry, and the coordination to get out there to the cavalry remains an issue a bit, ann, because as you know, the injuries just continue to pour in, and there has been a call all week for good doctors and nurses and a safe place for patients to go. and yes, now there is a place that has all three of those things. while so many medical personnel are exhausted and weary after ten days of dealing with catastrophic injuries, agony and death, relief is here.
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united states naval ship "comfort" has pulled into port-au-prince. dr. tim donohue is the chief of surgery. >> hopefully, we'll stress relieve for the staff ashore. >> reporter: the staff performs humanitarian work all year but is especially trained to respond to crises like these. the "comfort" is a 1,000-bed floating hospital equipped to handle almost anything. >> we've seen just about most of the bones you can have broken. you name it, we can just about do it. >> reporter: since the doors opened on tuesday night, patients have flooded in, air-lifted from the mainland. isaiah has a fractured arm and a lacerated scalp. like most of the people air-lifted here, he received some basic first aid but is in need of real medical treatment. >> he felt the ground shake, and when he went to run, the wall started to fall, so some of the cinder blocks fell on him. >> reporter: while the "comfort" falls under the command of the navy, there's an unusual
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situation here. civilian doctors and nurses, if they have the right credentials, can come on board and volunteer their services. everyone on board has seen the pictures and heard the reports of the devastation, and they are prepared. but being prepared for patients and being prepared for the stress of the on-the-job work for the doctors and nurses when facing such sadness can be very different things. how do you guys support each other? >> you know, it really is a really pretty close-knit team. we've also identified resources, the chaplain, we have got an amal number of mental health professionals, if need be. >> reporter: but for now, it's the health of the haitians that matters and getting a population back on its feet. ann, i have to tell you, i'm quite surprised that there are still so many severely wounded who are walking the streets of haiti. we came across a 12-year-old yesterday who had been seen at one of the roadside clinics, treated with some rudimentary
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medicine, an iv put in, a catheter, and sent back to his tent city. we got him someplace else. we'll have that update on him tonight on "nightly." meantime, the other concern, infectious diseases -- typhoid, measles, polio, meningitis, and hopefully, not alcoholera. >> thanks for your job as a correspondent and on the ground. >> you bet, ann. ♪ ♪ [ male announcer ] you've wanted to quit smoking so many times, but those days came and went and the cigarettes remained. ♪ today's a new day. talk to your doctor about prescription treatment options and support. and this time, make it your time.
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plus, five steps to a better night sleep. highlights. there's mom and dad cleaning up. and there's the meatloaf. yuck. look what sometimes happens with the ordinary bag. it slips, oh, bingo, it falls in. mom was mad. mom should have used glad forceflex with the new stretchable drawstring that grips the can and stays in place. plus, it has the stretchable strength of forceflex. that's all today for glad tv. both: don't get mad-- get glad! would you like that to hurt now or later? uh-- what? (announcer) pepcid® complete doesn't make you choose. it neutralizes acid in seconds and controls heartburn all day or all night. pepcid® complete , works now and works later. if it's not there, we dig by the septic tank 'til we find the problem. average repair costs six thousand dollars. monthly maintenance with rid-x? about six dollars. (announcer) use rid-x monthly to help keep your septic systems operating efficiently between pumpings.
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>> live, local, latebreaking. this is wbal-tv 11 news today in baltimore. >> good morning. i'm jennifer franciotti. fire crews from two different counties were called in overnight to tackle the two- alarm fire near bel air. the flames were reported around 12:30 this morning on the 1000 block of secord. fire officials were able to get a fire under control in about an hour no reports of any injuries. the cause of the fire remains under investigation. all baltimore city family will not receive any damages from the city after their 9- year-old son was arrested for sitting on a dirt bike. after four hours of deliberation, a howard county jury rejected claims from the family of gerard mungo that
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police unfairly and arrested the seven-year-old for sitting on a motorbike in front of the home in 2007. lawmakers in annapolis are working to protect the public from dangerous dogs by making pet owners responsible for taming their animals. it would require -- the bill would require the spaying and neutering of many animals deemed dangerous by animal control officials. they say it would have a secondary benefit of reducing the population of stray animals. >> there is still a chance we could see some light rain, sleet, or snow during the day today. the temperatures should stay above freezing. we will not have too much or problem on the road. high temperature in the upper 30's in most areas. saturday is the best day out of the two. sunshine act, as temperatures pushing into the low end of the 40's.
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sunday and monday, the temperatures will be in the mid-forties. all right. it starts sunday afternoon, monday morning. some of the rain could be quite heavy. after that it will cool off. a chance for snow showers on tuesday and thursday. >> we will have another update at 9:55.
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♪ never gonna let you down, never gonna run around and dessert you ♪ ♪ never gonna make you cry, never gonna say good-bye, never gonna tell a lie and hurt you ♪ he writes the songs that make the whole world sing. now barry manilow is taking on some of the greatest love songs of all time, and he's going to be here to croon one for us live monday morning here on "today." and we've get a couple of barry manilow fans here -- >> banilows is what we're called. >> stephanie abrams, along with jenna wolfe, who are major man low -- >> stalkers. >> we don't stalk -- >> i'm fine with the word. >> jenna's okay with that, apparently. >> i promote the stalking part
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of that, aspect. >> it's good lawyers know that. >> lawyers know that. they're aware. he's coming with an entourage. we understand. >> also joining us, lester holt is back from haiti along with jenna, and you guys did such a good job there. we'll talk about why you're here now in a moment. meantime, let's talk about what's coming up this half hour. we have a topic that's of great interest to all of us around here, and that's sleep. >> something we don't get a lot of. so many of us get up in the middle of the night, but millions of people who don't work crazy hours actually have a hard time getting enough sleep as well. and in a moment, we'll talk about five simple ways to improve your rest time and maybe even make you smarter and happier as a result. >> okay. also, on this theme of feeling better and doing something for our health, we also have something about plants, and basically, air-purifying ferns to stress-relievers tease. we have p. allen smith here to tell us what plants can do to not only brighten up our homes, but also make us healthier and happier. first, at forementioned lester holt and jenna wolfe are back from haiti with an idea of
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what's coming up this weekend. still talking about haiti? >> yeah. this story is not going to go away for a long time. we'll have the latest from haiti. the rescue work continues, the search-and-recovery effort. just things moving on so many different levels and we'll try to nail down where things are and where they need to go. >> it's amazing. you guys did such a great job. >> thank you. we're approaching the 1,000th day since madeleine mccann disappeared from a resort in portugal. where is the investigation going now? where are we with that? we'll have the answers to some of those questions. and i'm ready to lighten the mood up a little bit with a fun story. it was the 1972 tv series that stood out from the crowd, "sanford and son." >> yeah. >> you were man low fans. i was a fan of this show. i sit down with the man who played lamont, or big dummy, as fred used to call him. we'll get the inside secrets of this classic show this weekend on "today." >> do you remember the theme show? ♪ >> quincy jones, i want to say, did that song. >> really? i didn't know that. >> classic. that was one of the best show
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openings of all time. all right, let's get a check of the weather, meanwhile -- ♪ >> there we go! >> that doesn't sound like what we were just singing. >> stephanie abrams -- >> sort of. we were butchering it. >> what were we singing? >> do your weather to the music. >> all right, let's get you into the weekend and talk about what we're all going to see on saturday and where you can be rockin' out with some nice weather, and that's along the east coast, a little on the cold side. the center of the country is where we will see some ice as we head into the second half of the weekend. ♪ >> the roads should be fine but we will still see a chance for rain or snow showers and a little bit of sleet mixed in off and on rain and snow showers
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so, that's your weekend forecast. >> well done. >> classic! >> yes. >> well done. coming up, we'll be talking about something you need to sleep, five steps. listen, this music is not one of them. did you know go-gurt is specially made to freeze and thaw by lunch time? so kids can have their favorite yogurt in their lunch box go-gurt. freeze it. thaw it. eat it up.
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this morning on "today's health," how to get the best sleep of your life. managing to get the recommended seven hours can be tough, but it is essential, because a good night's zs can be the key to keeping you smarter, calmer and happier. and here with five helpful hints for better sleep are "ladies' home journal" deputy editor margo gilman and sleep specialist margaret ash. good morning, ladies. >> good morning. >> something near and dear to us, getting sleep, because we never get enough around here, occupational hazard. what is the impact on your body when you don't sleep? >> it has so many different impacts. most of us think it's okay to skimp on sleep when we have a lot to do, but actually, it's counter productive because it makes us less effective. it lacks our ability to remember, our ability to think
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it affects our ability to problem-solve. we deal with stress less well. and in addition, lack of sleep is associated with an increased risk of certain diseases, with weight gain, with having more accidents. >> and carol, when you talk about weight gain, when you're feeling bad, you're just, a lot of times we don't realize it's the lack of sleep that's hurting us, right? >> unfortunately, we misread our body cues. we don't understand that we get up in the mortganing and might l a little down. it might not be that you're not coping as well. it might be that you're not sleeping as well and therefore less able to cope. >> and affects it mood. >> emotions are fragile. >> and with "ladies' home journal" out in february, you write an article about the rest of your life. >> yes. >> and there are five tips you go through to help us get a better night's sleep. one of the things you say people need to do is learn to slow things down a bit before going to bed at night. >> yeah. you've got to start winding down in advance of bedtime. don't decide right at the last minute before you go to bed that now's the perfect time to clean out the closet or empty the
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dishwasher. >> i do that all the time. >> some people do. you want to give your body the signals that it's time to transition, to slow down, to get sleepy. so, do something that's relaxing. take a warm bath. you know, dim the lights, turn off the television. do whatever it is that relaxes you, read a book, but don't, you know, get yourself so busy -- >> worked. >> -- and energized, worked up. >> because you start unloading the dishwasher and then see everything else that needs to be cleaned. carol, a lot of people will have the tv in the bedroom and will turn it on and just think mindless tv watching, but that gets the mind going, right? >> it really does. we fail to recognize the physiology. as she was pointing out, you need an hour to wind down before sleep. it's a change of state. so the chemicals for alertness and sleeping is different, and it's no different than changing the set on a show. you need time to transition into the different state. most of us will stay active, our mind will be active watching tv, and we don't realize the impact of this over time. >> right. >> it's no different than having
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the cheesecake for the diet. once is on but night after night after night, you pay a consequence for this. >> the other thing a lot of people do, and i'm guilty as well, i like to be warm when i go to sleep, but it's really important to kind of cool things down in the bedroom, right? >> absolutely. experts find we sleep much more soundly in a room that's cool. so, that's easy. if you live in an apartment where you can set the temperature, lower the thermostat before you go to bed. and if you live, as i do, in an apartment where you have no control over the heat, crack the window open or maybe rethink, you know, what kinds of clothes you wear to bed. >> your covers. >> i love fuzzy flannels, but they don't really work for me. they interrupt my sleep, so i switch out of them into my summer nighties. >> right. carol, why is that? why does the body respond better to cooler temperatures? >> again, the physiology. and here's how it works. it's really interesting. you have to maintain two things -- an internal body clock that controls body temperature, and to facilitate what the body would naturally do, maintain the environment. so, there's a clock in the brain that responds to light and other cues that will set a temperature
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rhythm. when we go to sleep, the temperature drops and we maintain a cooler body temperature to cool deeper stages of sleep and the temperature elevates when we wake up. so, all these tips are helping to facilitate what you should be doing to allow for those natural body rhythms to work for you. >> and one of the things that's going to get in the way of that is, margo, you say having a drink before you go to bed. a lot of people think, oh, a little glass of wine helps me go to sleep. it's the opposite, right? >> right. alcohol is a stimulant. it makes you feel sleepy initially, but ultimately, it is going to cause a disruptive slumber. same thing with caffeine. people know not to drink caffeine. that's kind of drilled into us. >> right. >> but if you're sensitive to caffei caffeine, stay away from decaffeinated beverages as well, because they also have small amounts of caffeine in them. >> and what is the -- why is the reason that alcohol tends to impair your sleep? >> as margo was pointing out, it can help you relax, but the problem is -- >> the sugar? >> well, what it is is the alcohol alters the normal sleep pattern, architecture of sleep.
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there's an actual pattern that's very important to have restful sleep. alcohol will disrupt that. you'll fall asleep and maintain sleep, but sleep will be abnormal, and the next day you'll wake up feeling as if you didn't sleep at all. and for people with breathing problems, it will alter the function of breathing. so, if you're someone who snores or has sleep apnea, it could be lethal. so, it's a problem. >> the other thing is hide the clock. a lot of us stare at the clock, i should be sleeping more, i should be sleeping more. that will make you more stressed out. >> if you're not sleeping because you're worrying about something, seeing the clock going 3:16, 3:17 is not going to help. >> i think mine was doing that this morning, as a matter of fact. >> simple thing, turn the clock away from you or throw a towel over it. >> and carol, ways for people to overall reduce the stress level as we go to bed. >> well, we can't solve the problems of the day in the middle of the night. what tends to happen is as you're drifting off to sleep, that's the first time you're alone with your own thoughts and you start getting these racing thoughts, and you start staring at that clock because now you're frustrating and not sleeping and it's a self-fulfilling prophecy.
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if you're doing that, get out of bed, you're not sleeping anyway. get a journal and write down your problems and start coming up with solutions during the day. you have to get ahead of it. take control of the day to take control of the night, you really do. >> right. ladies, thank you. margo gilman and carol ash. thank you both for being here. >> thank you. coming up, the healing power of some plants. [ female announcer ] pure cane sugar and the stevia plant. two of nature's sweetest wonders growing together under the same sun. and now for the first time in new sun crystals, the only 100% natural sweetener made with pure cane sugar and stevia.
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this morning on "today's garden," the healing power of plants. sure, they look pretty, but there is more, from cleaning the air in your home to satisfying your sweet tooth, plants are essential to your health and your happiness, especially in winter. that's what p. allen smith says. he's the author of "bringing the garden indoors." hey, p. allen smith. >> happy new year. >> good to see you. happy new year to you. you've got -- you're teaching us something, because actually, all the times, all the years i've had house plants, i never really knew that, as you say, they can actually clean the toxins in our air in our home. >> yeah, and there's so many things flying around the air that we're not aware of. >> like? >> formaldehyde, benzene, comes from the finishes on furniture, the floor, the walls, whatever. and so, many of these house plants, actually, will purify the air. >> but you need a lot of them. >> you do need several. i mean, you need 10 to 20 per 1,500 square feet of the house for maximum effect. this time of year, of course, when we're all sort of closed in, is a great time to get started, and it's a healthy way
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to start the new year. >> especially if you have kids. you want the air to be clean. >> what i'm going to do -- this is a peace lily. >> i love the peace lily! nice and shiny. >> easy to grow. >> love it! >> and i love integrated with the ice orchids. so you make it easy because you get the color and also the foliage. but back here, this is an exotic angel delilah fern. ferns typically shed a lot. this one does not. >> so, that's a good plus. >> that is a good thing. and this is our good old friend english ivy. now, if you have pets, you don't want the english ivy -- >> on the ground. >> -- where they can get to the ivy, but it is so easy to grow. >> you have the eureka plant over here, which you love. >> right. the eureka palm is great at purifying the air. this is a dwarf dait palm. and this is an exotic angel, a theme on the peace lily, which is very good. now, the thing you want to keep in mind, ann, if you're trying
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to keep toxins out of the house by using plants, when you spray them -- if you have a problem with insects -- you don't want to use a hard chemical. use something that's safe and always spray the under side of them. >> why? >> well, that's typically where the insect will lay its egg, where they colonize, hang out. that sort of thing. >> you don't spray them with water? you spray them with -- >> well, just to be safe. >> all right. >> we're breathing clean air. now let's talk about what we're ingesting in our bodies. >> i love this part. we have lemon balm. >> just smell this. lemon balm is so good and so easy to grow. it's very good for reducing stress. >> and you can make that into teas, can't you? >> you sure can. you can buy it in the grocery store or buy these plants. >> listen-to-just take the leaves and put them in hot water and make a tea? >> sure. >> oh, my favorite. there's something relaxing. what about the values of these? >> mint is good for an upset tummy. that helps. it's also relaxing. this is good for relaxation, lavender. who doesn't love the aroma of
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lavender? and talk about helping you with your sleep, that's one of the herbs that's very good with sleep. >> i think that's very true. that's worked for me, anyway. listen, you also have the aruba? >> aarubias. >> and it comes in white? >> red and a green one. and it's good for calming the central nervous system. >> now, you would probably buy this in a tea. you wouldn't grow this. >> i guess one could, but it's very good, and you can sweeten it with a natural sweetener, such as stevia. >> isn't this interesting? you've probably never seen this before, but this is the plant -- you know, stevia's kind of becoming more and more famous because it comes from a plant. >> in extract or liquid. and just taste a leaf, ann. >> okay. >> these are stevia plants that you can grow in your garden. >> isn't that crazy? >> just taste it. isn't that good? >> it is sweet. >> isn't that amazing? it's very, very sweet. >> that's crazy. >> this is an interesting concept. look at this -- i buy it and it turns -- >> and no calories? >> i want the cameraman to watch.
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i'm going to release the stevia into this water as well as the minerals, and there it goes. >> mm-hmm. >> or here it goes. >> i see. when you do that, then it drops down into the drink. >> mm-hmm, it does. >> but the point about stevia is that, isn't it a zero-calorie, healthier version of sugar? isn't that -- >> it is, it is, absolutely. now look, try one of these drinks, see what you think. >> okay. >> because it's got stevia. >> okay, and isn't it more sweet than sugar? >> 300 times is what they say. >> wow, okay. >> isn't that good? five calories. >> and when in doubt, chocolate. and we're out of time, i'm sory to say. >> it has so much power in it to make you happy. >> let's have some of that. p. allen, thank you for making us feel so much better with plants. coming up, kathie lee and hoda
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look who just wandered in, kathie lee and hoda. hi, you guys. >> hey. >> what have you got coming up? >> we've got a lot coming up. >> we're glad to have you home, by the way. we have wallace, bearing a sword. >> and we combed the crowd and >> live, local, latebreaking. this is wbal-tv 11 news today in baltimore. >> good morning. i am jennifer franciotti. a lieutenant with the anne arundel county police department is in federal custody this morning, charged with a child pornography crying. 47-year-old james cifala is accused of extending sexually explicit texts with a 16-year- old girl and requesting and receiving explicit photos of the juvenile. there reportedly contacted each other more than 1300 times over
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three weeks last summer. three weeks last summer. we could spend five
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♪ spread a little somethin' to remember ♪ ♪ spread a little joy and see ♪ need a little happiness to be ♪ ♪ living the life with me >> good morning. there is still pretty good chance we could see light rain, sleet, or snow during the day today. the temperatures will say above freezing. the roads will be ok if you are traveling. it said it is the best day of the two, sunshine and 43. a good chance for rain on sunday.
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>> we will see you back here for 11 news at noon. have a nice morning.
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